The Deep State is trampling on our freedoms, threatening our liberty, and is answerable to nobody, not even the President of the United States, Edward Snowden warned during an interview with Ron Paul this week.
Snowden, whose 2013 leak of government documents showed how the NSA spies on all of us, constantly, without a warrant, also warned that trading freedom for government promises of security will only lead the country down a dark path.
The most sinister quality of the Deep State, Snowden says, is its ability to mask its very existence from the public, allowing it to undermine President Trump while remaining largely hidden from scrutiny.
“Generally, when we’re talking about the Deep State, what we’re talking about is a mass of government that survives beyond administrations, but that is not responding to the politics of the people. This belongs not to a particular political party, but it serves across parties. Across administrations.”
'Security…or Surveillance? The Edward Snowden Interview' — don't miss this very special Ron Paul Liberty Report!https://t.co/86jlZ6Cb4X
— Ron Paul (@RonPaul) June 20, 2017
The Deep State’s culture of anonymity and secrecy convinces employees that they are untouchable, and won’t ever be held accountable for their actions, Snowden said, explaining that even “routine communications” between employees at the CIA and NSA are classified by default.
“Everything we do at the NSA and CIA is typically classified by default, unless you actually work to make it not classified.”
“When I sent an email about lunch plans to one of my office buddies, that was going to be classified.Even the most banal email that you’re sending…is classified.”
Though he says he favors small government and opposes widespread surveillance, Snowden balked at being branded a libertarian by Paul, arguing that labels like “libertarian” or “liberal” aren’t entirely accurate.
“We’re more than tribes or labels. It is true that I think we have challenges that are derived from governments reaching a new scale that they haven’t previously occupied historically, allowing for the rise of these sort of ‘Super States.’”
With the passage of time, the scrutiny on Snowden and his leaks has subsided, allowing him to focus on the wider picture.
“Things were really crazy that close to the event in 2013. You never knew what was happening and what they were saying from the government side.
“There was this cycle of deception that was occurring where the journalists would publish some report and say this is what’s happening and this is how they’re violating your rights… Then the government would immediately come out and say ‘oh no we don’t do that that’s a misunderstanding it’s not quite right’ and they’d issue various denials to these reports.
“Then immediately the journalists would have to find some particular point that disproved [the government’s counter-report] then the government would sort of walk back their denial, and this went on and on and on.”
“This was really consuming my life, [the journalists] lives, and the lives of everybody involved for the longest time. But as we’ve gotten farther and farther from the event, I’ve gotten free to pursue my own interest once again.”
“Small government tends to be more respecting of individuals’ rights than large governments. And the question we need to ask, is why?”